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latest news

Ireland North
Martin McGuinness - from IRA leader to Stormont minister

29/03/2017: The IRA campaign, the ‘peace process’ and the working class

  Ireland North

Greece
H&M workers score victory against management plans

28/03/2017: Despite very difficult times, struggle can bring results

  Greece

 Solidarity
#JobstownNotGuilty international day of action a huge success

28/03/2017: Over 30 protests around the world and 88 MPs/MEPs pledge support

  Solidarity

Russia/Belarus
A week-end of mass protests

27/03/2017: New spring of protest opens up, as 1,000s arrested

  Russia

Hong Kong
Creeping “coup” by Chinese dictatorship

27/03/2017: Defend the four Hong Kong legislators

  Hong Kong

Britain
Terror attack at Westminster

24/03/2017: Unite against terror, racism and war

  Britain

Italy
Democratic Party splits and 5-Star Movement in crisis

22/03/2017: Class struggle can build real left force

  Italy

Spain
Student strike empties classes and fills streets on 9 March

21/03/2017: Over 100,000 take to the streets in SE demonstrations

  Spain

Scotland
Second referendum on independence?

18/03/2017: SNP fire the starting gun but offer no solutions to austerity

  Scotland

Brazil
National day of strikes and protests shows Temer can be beaten

17/03/2017: For a one-day general strike as the next step

  Brazil

South Africa
Unity against poverty, crime and xenophobia

17/03/2017: Capitalist politicians use xenophobia to divert attention from failures of profit system

  South Africa

Netherlands
Election result a colossal defeat for austerity government

16/03/2017: Oppose Wilders and the ‘mainstream’ right – Build a mass workers’ party that struggles for socialism

  Netherlands

Yemen
Workers and their families left to starve by multi-billionaire companies

16/03/2017: International campaign needed to force companies to pay

  Yemen

Hong Kong
Protest against LSG Sky Chefs dismissal of union chairman

14/03/2017: Ng Chi-Fai sacked for organising union by multinational’s Hong Kong division – international solidarity needed

  Hong Kong

Ireland North
Snap election raises sectarian temperature    

14/03/2017: Workers need strong socialist alternative at ballot box and in unions

  Ireland North

Quebec
Counter protest against far-right

13/03/2017: Rise of Islamophobia and right-wing reaction poses new challenges to the left

  Quebec

 International Women's Day
Speech by Kshama Sawant

12/03/2017: Video of 8 March rally in Seattle

  Women

 International Women’s Day
Millions join marches and take action

10/03/2017: Socialists around the world demand an end to women’s oppression

  Women

 Hong Kong
Women’s march against sexism and racism

09/03/2017: International Women’s Day: “Solidarity with global mass protests and women’s strikes”

  Women

 Spain
Hundreds of thousands participate in International Women’s day student strike

08/03/2017: ‘Libres y Combativas’ and Sindicato de Estudiantes call strike against sexist violence and for working class women's rights

  Women

Pakistan
Political spectacle of the ruling class

08/03/2017: Most workers underemployed, 40% in poverty - situation demands new workers’ party

  Pakistan

 International Women’s Day 2017
A century on from the Russian Revolution

06/03/2017: Demonstrations world-wide swelled by anti-Trump anger

  Women

Britain
Massive demo shows battle to save the NHS can be won

06/03/2017: Up to 250,000 march in national protest, organised from below

  Britain

Egypt
Price hikes hit workers and middle classes

04/03/2017: Falling support for dictator Sisi portends growing opposition

  Egypt

Hong Kong’s sham election

03/03/2017: Pan-democrats sink to new low by supporting “lesser evil” John Tsang

  Hong Kong

US
Socialist response to Trump’s address to joint session of congress

02/03/2017: Kshama Sawant, Socialist Alternative councillor, speaks

  US

Sweden
“Who could believe it?"

24/02/2017: What is behind Trump's attack?

  Sweden

Britain/Ireland
Dublin's #JobstownNotGuilty

23/02/2017: Defend the right to protest - stop this political vendetta!

  Ireland Republic

Ireland
A web of intrigue sparks government crisis

22/02/2017: Smear campaign against a prominent police whistleblower

  Ireland Republic

February revolution 1917
What lessons for today?

21/02/2017: 23 February 1917 (8 March in today’s calendar) marked the beginning of the socialist revolution in Russia, which sparked a revolutionary wave that would travel around the world.

  Russian Revolution

Britain

Syria vote reveals two Labour parties in one

www.socialistworld.net, 02/12/2015
website of the committee for a workers' international, CWI

Fight for a party that stands against war and austerity

Editorial from The Socialist, paper of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales)

The civil war within the Labour party has reached fever pitch. In the last week, Blairite MPs and right-wing shadow cabinet members openly joined forces with the Tories, attempting to imprison Jeremy Corbyn and secure a parliamentary vote in favour of war in Syria.

The crisis has removed any remaining veil of ‘unity’ that had cloaked the reality: Labour is essentially two parties in one. There is, on the one hand, the Corbyn-supporting Labour Party. The hundreds of thousands who were enthused by the clear anti-austerity and anti-war message of his leadership campaign. The 75% of members who oppose bombing Syria. The people who delivered Jeremy his historically large mandate in September.

On the other, there are the majority of pro-austerity right-wing Labour councillors, MPs and shadow cabinet members. And between these two irreconcilably opposed political positions, peaceful co-existence is impossible.

This contradiction at the centre of the Labour Party will be made most abundantly clear when, on 2 December (after we go to press), the leader of the opposition and the shadow foreign secretary speak in the House of Commons to put forward diametrically opposed views. While Jeremy Corbyn will advance a case against bombing, Hillary Benn will back the Tories’ march to war.

‘Free vote’ mistake

In the view of the Socialist Party, it was a serious mistake for Jeremy Corbyn to grant the concession of allowing Labour MPs a ‘free’ vote on the question of bombing Syria. Clearly he is hoping this move will stave off an all-out war with the Blairites - who had threatened resignations if he attempted to make them vote against war, even though a majority of Labour MPs indicated they were against the war.

But the truth is that this climbdown will embolden both the Tories and the Labour right. Had Labour taken a clear stand in opposing this latest round of imperialist intervention in the Middle East, the government could well have been forced to retreat.

Instead, Cameron is now pressing ahead with the vote in Parliament, feeling confident that he will get backing of enough Labour MPs to vote for bombing.

The disastrous legacy of recent British interventions - in Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan - has helped to sow the seeds of the deadly chaos that currently engulfs Syria and its people - including the horror of Isis.

This has made Cameron more anxious to have the political cover of a vote in Parliament, including the support of Labour MPs, before embarking on this latest war. Chastened by losing the vote on bombing Assad in 2013, he has been cautious to make sure the ‘parliamentary sums add up’ before pressing ahead.

As the Socialist Party argued in last week’s issue of this paper, bombing Syria will not stop Isis. Cameron is attempting to use the grief and outrage felt by ordinary people at recent terrorist atrocities - including in Paris, Mali, Beirut, Tunisia and Ankara - to try to build public support for this war.

But his real motivation is not to make Britain’s streets safer. In reality, extending British air strikes from Iraq to Syria risks increasing the chances of new terrorist attacks on our shores.

Instead, it is maintaining Britain’s prestige as an imperialist power which is a main motivator for this latest push, with the government determined not to be ‘left behind’ as the US, France and Russia continue their bombing campaign. This instinct is shared by the Labour right.

After all, many of the MPs and shadow cabinet members currently scheming against Corbyn were among the architects and supporters of Blair’s bloody wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. They are biding their time before attempting to unseat Corbyn, and will feel that they have scored a victory this week.

Anti-war mandate

By allowing himself to be ‘hemmed in’ on Syria, a dangerous precedent for future battles on other key issues has been set. In September, Jeremy Corbyn won an enormous mandate on the basis of a leadership campaign which put forward a clear anti-war and anti-cuts stance.

But now he finds himself perched atop an overwhelmingly hostile, right-wing parliamentary Labour party, whose aim is to remove him as soon as they feel the timing is right.

As the battle over Syria has raged, these malign intentions have been made absolutely clear. It was revealed in the papers over the weekend before the vote that some Labour back-benchers were seeking legal advice over the possibility of excluding Jeremy Corbyn from the ballot paper if a new leadership election was triggered by MPs.

Meanwhile, shadow cabinet members including Tom Watson and Hilary Benn openly broke ranks by publicly declaring their support for the bombing, even before internal discussions on the question had reached a conclusion.

At the same time, a plethora of shadow cabinet members and Labour MPs - some named, but most anonymous - have lined up to attack Jeremy Corbyn in the press, detailing his various heinous crimes such as ‘writing to Labour MPs stating his anti-war position’. Indeed, despite Corbyn supposedly striking a deal with deputy leader Tom Watson - whereby official ‘party policy’ would be to oppose the bombing while MPs would not be ‘whipped’ - as soon as Corbyn signalled that he was in retreat, the Blairites smelt blood.

At the subsequent shadow cabinet meeting on 30 November they forced him to step back even from this uncomfortable compromise. It is reported that shadow cabinet members refused to leave the room until Jeremy Corbyn agreed that Hilary Benn would be allowed to sum up Labour’s contribution to the discussion in parliament from the despatch box - supporting the government’s position.

Without a serious strategy to overcome the isolation faced by Jeremy Corbyn and his few allies in the parliamentary Labour party, he could rapidly become completely paralysed as leader and ultimately be removed. This episode has emphasised that it is now of even greater urgency that Corbyn’s supporters are organised with a clear strategy and programme.

Tens of thousands respond

A glimpse of what is possible was shown over the weekend before the vote. Tens of thousands of people responded to calls to write to and, in some cases, lobby Labour MPs to vote against the war.

Over 70,000 people also responded to a survey sent out to Labour party members and supporters - with three quarters declaring their opposition to the bombing. But letter writing campaigns and surveys are not enough.

An almighty struggle is required in order to defeat the Labour right. This means mobilising the hundreds of thousands of working class and young people who back Corbyn, drawing on the strength of the organised workers’ movement in the trade unions and bringing in existing anti-austerity campaigns and parties.

The setting up of Momentum was a step in the right direction. But so-far, on a national level this organisation has mainly restricted itself to things like calling for voter registration campaigns and organising for people to assist with canvassing in support of the right-wing Labour candidate standing in the Oldham by-election.

Instead Momentum nationally should adopt the kind of approach taken at local level by some of its groups. A good example is Lewisham Momentum, which has taken a clear anti-cuts stand and is campaigning for Labour councillors to protect local services rather than passing on Tory austerity.

Mandatory re-selection

At an anti-austerity conference in London on 21 November Matt Wrack, general secretary of the firefighters’ union FBU, and Mark Serwotka, general secretary of civil servants’ union PCS, called for the setting up of a Trade Union Momentum. This could potentially play a very important role.

This week at a special conference, the FBU also voted to re-affiliate to Labour. The Socialist Party has cautioned against this - as affiliation means handing money to the right wing Labour machine, not Corbyn and his supporters.

But what is clear is that, whether affiliated or not, the trade unions must now use their weight to put pressure on Labour councillors and MPs to act in the interests of working class people.

This fight must not be limited to the current, undemocratic Labour Party structures. At an absolute minimum, this means opposing imperialist wars and interventions and refusing to continue to implement brutal austerity measures.

In the Socialist Party’s view it was a mistake for Jeremy Corbyn to state that he opposed the mandatory re-selection of MPs. In fact, it is absolutely crucial that Labour MPs or councillors who use their positions to vote for this war - not to mention the destruction of jobs and services through cuts - should be held democratically accountable via a reselection process.

As the Blairites sharpen their knives against Corbyn, it is vital that we are organised to defend him and to fight for there to be no further retreat from the key pledges that saw him elected. The Socialist Party is helping to organise this struggle and to fight for the socialist programme that is needed in order to put an end to war and austerity.



Europe

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cwi publications

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Che Guevara: Símbolo de Lucha

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A socialist world is possible, the history of the cwi with new introduction by Peter Planning green growth, a contribution to the debate on enviromental sustainability

NEWS

Greece: H&M workers score victory against management plans
28/03/2017, Statement (slightly edited) by Xekinima (CWI Greece):
Despite very difficult times, struggle can bring results

Solidarity: #JobstownNotGuilty international day of action a huge success
28/03/2017, socialistworld.net :
Over 30 protests around the world and 88 MPs/MEPs pledge support

Russia/Belarus: A week-end of mass protests
27/03/2017, Socialist Alternative (CWI Russia) Reporters:
New spring of protest opens up, as 1,000s arrested

Hong Kong: Creeping “coup” by Chinese dictatorship
27/03/2017, Dikang, Socialist Action (CWI in Hong Kong) :
Defend the four Hong Kong legislators

Britain: Terror attack at Westminster
24/03/2017, Judy Beishon, from the Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales) website :
Unite against terror, racism and war

Belarus: Protesters flood onto streets demanding scrapping of “law against parasites”
21/03/2017, Daniil Raskolnikov (translation of article from the Russian CWI site www.socialist.news):
President Lukashenko must go!

Spain: Student strike empties classes and fills streets on 9 March
21/03/2017, Sindicato de Estudiantes (SE), Spanish Students' Union :
Over 100,000 take to the streets in SE demonstrations

Scotland: Second referendum on independence?
18/03/2017, Philip Stott, Socialist Party Scotland (CWI) :
SNP fire the starting gun but offer no solutions to austerity

South Africa: Unity against poverty, crime and xenophobia
17/03/2017, Shaun Arendse, Workers and Socialist Party (CWI South Africa):
Capitalist politicians use xenophobia to divert attention from failures of profit system

International Women’s Day: March in Malaysia and week of activity in Belgium
16/03/2017, socialistworld.net :
Reports from Kuala Lumpur and Brussels

Netherlands: Election result a colossal defeat for austerity government
16/03/2017, Pieter Brans, Socialist Alternative (CWI in Netherlands), Amsterdam:
Oppose Wilders and the ‘mainstream’ right – Build a mass workers’ party that struggles for socialism

Russian Revolution: March 1917 - After the fall of Czarism, what next for the revolution?
16/03/2017, socialistworld.net:
New article on 1917revolution.org

Hong Kong: Protest against LSG Sky Chefs dismissal of union chairman
14/03/2017, Sally Tang Mei-ching, Socialist Action (CWI in Hong Kong) :
Ng Chi-Fai sacked for organising union by multinational’s Hong Kong division – international solidarity needed

Quebec: Counter protest against far-right
13/03/2017, Michele Hehn, Alternative Socialiste (CWI in Quebec) :
Rise of Islamophobia and right-wing reaction poses new challenges to the left

International Women's Day: Speech by Kshama Sawant
12/03/2017, Socialistworld.net :
Video of 8 March rally in Seattle

International Women’s Day: Millions join marches and take action
10/03/2017, Clare Doyle, CWI:
Socialists around the world demand an end to women’s oppression

Hong Kong: Women’s march against sexism and racism
09/03/2017, Socialist Action (CWI in Hong Kong) reporters:
International Women’s Day: “Solidarity with global mass protests and women’s strikes”

Spain: Hundreds of thousands participate in International Women’s day student strike
08/03/2017, Sindicato de Estudiantes, students’ union in the Spanish state :
‘Libres y Combativas’ and Sindicato de Estudiantes call strike against sexist violence and for working class women's rights

Pakistan: Political spectacle of the ruling class
08/03/2017, Tariq Shahzad, National Organiser of IYWM (International Youth and Workers Movement) :
Most workers underemployed, 40% in poverty - situation demands new workers’ party

Britain: Massive demo shows battle to save the NHS can be won
06/03/2017, Hannah Sell, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) deputy general secretary :
Up to 250,000 march in national protest, organised from below

Egypt: Price hikes hit workers and middle classes
04/03/2017, David Johnson, Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales) :
Falling support for dictator Sisi portends growing opposition

Hong Kong’s sham election
03/03/2017, Dikang, Socialist Action:
Pan-democrats sink to new low by supporting “lesser evil” John Tsang

US: Socialist response to Trump’s address to joint session of congress
02/03/2017, socialistworld.net:
Kshama Sawant, Socialist Alternative councillor, speaks

Catalonia: Historic demonstration in Barcelona in support of refugees
25/02/2017, Esquerra Revolucionària :
'Volem acollir'

Sweden: “Who could believe it?"

24/02/2017, Per-Åke Westerlund, Rättvisepartiet Socialisterna (CWI Sweden):
What is behind Trump's attack?

CWI Comment and Analysis

ANALYSIS

Ireland North: Martin McGuinness - from IRA leader to Stormont minister
29/03/2017, Michael Cleary, Socialist Party (CWI Ireland), Belfast :
The IRA campaign, the ‘peace process’ and the working class

Italy: Democratic Party splits and 5-Star Movement in crisis
22/03/2017, Marco Veruggio, ControCorrrente, (CWI in Italy) :
Class struggle can build real left force

Brazil: National day of strikes and protests shows Temer can be beaten


17/03/2017, André Ferrari LSR (CWI in Brazil) :
For a one-day general strike as the next step

Yemen: Workers and their families left to starve by multi-billionaire companies
16/03/2017, Cedric Gerome, CWI :
International campaign needed to force companies to pay

Ireland North: Snap election raises sectarian temperature    
14/03/2017, Daniel Waldron, Socialist Party (CWI Ireland), Belfast :
Workers need strong socialist alternative at ballot box and in unions

International Women’s Day 2017: A century on from the Russian Revolution
06/03/2017, Clare Doyle, CWI :
Demonstrations world-wide swelled by anti-Trump anger

February revolution 1917: What lessons for today?
21/02/2017, Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales), printed in the Socialist (paper of the Socialist Party):
23 February 1917 (8 March in today’s calendar) marked the beginning of the socialist revolution in Russia, which sparked a revolutionary wave that would travel around the world.

India: Upheaval in Tamil Nadu
09/02/2017, Sajith Attepuram, New Socialist Alternative (NSA) (CWI India) :
Corruption, nepotism, and other crimes of ruling party exposed

Britain: Universal basic income demand gains ground
08/02/2017, Judy Beishon, from The Socialist (weekly newspaper of the Socialist Party – CWI England & Wales) :
What approach should socialists take?

CWI and Izquierda Revolucionaria – Towards unification
06/02/2017, Socialistworld.net :
Joint declaration of the CWI’s IEC and Izquierda Revolucionaria’s IEC

France: After Sarkozy, Juppé and Valls, now Fillon is on the way out
06/02/2017, Alex Rouillard, Gauche Révolutionnaire (CWI in France) :
Space opening up to left of Socialist Party

Syria: Is an end to the war in sight?
03/02/2017, Serge Jordan (CWI) :
New movements for change will need to arm themselves with the lessons of the Syrian tragedy

Sri Lanka: The year 2017
31/01/2017, Siritunga Jayasuriya, United Socialist Party (CWI in Sri Lanka) :
Between oppression and struggle

Canada: Where are Trudeau’s ‘Sunny Ways’?
31/01/2017, Tim Heffernan, Socialist Alternative (CWI Canada), Toronto

:
Battles of Indigenous peoples, youth, workers will test Liberal government

Russian Revolution Centenary: January 1917 - On the eve of revolution
29/01/2017, Niall Mulholland, from 1917revolution.org :
War, hunger, hated Tsarist regime: class tensions reach breaking point

Afghanistan: The limits of US power
28/01/2017, Judy Beishon, from Socialism Today (February 2017 issue), monthly magazine of the Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales)<br />
<br />
:
Imperialism’s 15-year adventure a bloody catastrophe for millions

US: Build 100 days of resistance to Trump’s agenda!
27/01/2017, Bryan Koulouris, Socialist Alternative, US :
Establishment deeply divided as mass resistance explodes

Millions on women's marches around the world
25/01/2017, Editorial from the Socialist, paper of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) and reports from US marches :
Reports from mass women's marches against Trump

China: New US President’s approach to China
21/01/2017, Vincent Kolo, chinaworker.info :
Outbursts raise fears of confrontation

Ireland North: Snap elections called to Stormont Assembly
17/01/2017, Daniel Waldron, Socialist Party (CWI Ireland), Belfast :
Build a socialist alternative to the ‘Orange’ versus ‘Green’ headcount

Spain: What kind of Podemos do workers and youth need?
17/01/2017, Izquierda Revolucionaria, Spanish state, editorial :
Debate within leadership touches on fundamental issues for future of party

US: Trump prepares vicious attacks
05/01/2017, Philip Locker and Tom Crean, Socialist Alternative (US):
Mass resistance needed!

Russian Revolution centenary
02/01/2017, Editorial from Socialism Today, Dec/Jan 2017 edition:
Defending the legacy in a new era

2017:Upheaval and fightback will continue
01/01/2017, Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) general secretary :
Everything to play for in 2017

Britain's shifting political contours
22/12/2016, Hannah Sell, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) from Socialism Today Dec/Jan 2017 edition :
Capitalist establishment in disarray